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The Global Food Waste Scandal

TED Talks Western countries throw out nearly half of their food, not because it’s inedible -- but because it doesn’t look appealing. Tristram Stuart delves into the shocking data of wasted food, calling for a more responsible use of global resources.

 

No one should be surprised that more developed societies are more wasteful societies.  It is not just personal wasting of food at the house and restaurants that are the problem.  Perfectly edible food is thrown out due to size (smaller than standards but perfectly normal), cosmetics (Bananas that are shaped 'funny') and costumer preference (discarded bread crust).  This is an intriguing perpective on our consumptive culture, but it also is helpful in framing issues such as sustainability and human and environmental interactions in a technologically advanced societies that are often removed form the land where the food they eat originates. 

 

Tags: food, agriculture, consumption, sustainability, TED, video, unit 5 agriculture.


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Kenny Dominguez's curator insight, November 29, 2013 6:13 PM

Ted explains it well how we all waste perfectly good food that people would like to eat. Also it was amazing how much food was in the dumpsters that was just a day or week old. That meat could feed hundreds of people that are struggling to eat and all that meet to waste. 

megan b clement's curator insight, December 16, 2013 1:51 AM

Ted talks about just how wasteful our planet is. How we just ignore the issue and act like it will  not affect us in the future. When he shows you video and pictures of massive piles of the ends of a loaf of bread or all the food that Stop and Shop throws out because it does not "look" good for the customer. How every little bit of help counts you can try to make a little bit of an effort to be less wasteful. We have so much unnecessary waste. Like when he uses the example of how many people throw away the ends of a loaf of bread then he shows the waste of the ends of bread in massive piles it makes you sick. Especially with all of the hungry people in the world we need to be more resourceful.

 

 

Seth Dixon's curator insight, October 21, 2014 2:13 PM

No one should be surprised that more developed societies are more wasteful societies.  It is not just personal wasting of food at the house and restaurants that are the problem.  Perfectly edible food is thrown out due to size (smaller than standards but perfectly normal), cosmetics (Bananas that are shaped 'funny') and costumer preference (discarded bread crust).  This is an intriguing perceptive on our consumptive culture, but it also is helpful in framing issues such as sustainability and human and environmental interactions in a technologically advanced societies that are often removed form the land where the food they eat originates. 


Tags: food, agriculture, consumption, sustainability, TED, video, unit 5 agriculture.

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Development data visualization

More about this programme: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b00wgq0l Hans Rosling's famous lectures combine enormous quantities of public data with a sport's ...

 

If you haven't seen this video, it is an incredible data visualization to explain the correlation between income and life expectancy.  He uses temporal and spatial markers to show changes from 1810 to the present.  If you discuss it in your course, this would help to explain the epidemiological transition.


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Dan Barber: How I fell in love with a fish

Chef Dan Barber squares off with a dilemma facing many chefs today: how to keep fish on the menu.

 

This is a compelling analysis of the agricultural food system through the case-study of fish farms.  If we fish the seas like we clear-cut forests, the biodiversity of the world's waters will be seriously depleted.  That has been the economic model for fishing for hundreds of years and it is obviously not sustainable given the growing population and demand for fish.   However, not all "sustainable" fish farming businesses are equal, and this TED talk demonstrates some of the best practices to restructure the food industry for the best food and environmental results.


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EnviroJMS's curator insight, September 18, 2013 7:29 AM

This is an interesting video on sustainable fish farming, it might be helpful to someone who wants to write about sustainable farming. Apologies, it is quite long

 

Aleksandre da Silva

 

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Sustainability explained through animation

Watch this short animated movie explaining sustainability created for RealEyes by Igloo Animations...

 


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Agriculture: Back to the Start

Coldplay's haunting classic 'The Scientist' is performed by country music legend Willie Nelson for the soundtrack of the short film entitled, "Back to the St...

 

Sure this is an animated commercial for Chipotle Grill, but this perfectly encapsulates the beliefs, values and ethics that underscore the organic farming movement. 


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Aurora Rider's curator insight, October 24, 2014 10:14 AM

Sure this is a Chipotle commercial but is does a good job at showing the belief that we should go back to the old way of farming. The video shows a family farm being taken over by what appears to be some big corporation. Upon being taken over, the animals are confined in small compartments and injected by what appears to be antibiotics and some other unknown substance. The factories they are sent to are polluting the place. The farmer sees all of this and decides to go back to the start.

jada_chace's curator insight, October 26, 2014 7:17 PM

In the video it shows how the world has evolved in the way that humans take action on Mother Nature’s ways. In the beginning, there was a small family farm that was growing crops and animals. Shortly after that, it showed how small family farms are being taken over by the big agribusinesses. In today’s society that tends to happen more and more, which can be both good and bad on our economy. Unless people don’t make a change about the way we treat our food, nothing in our economy is going to get better. 

Cassie Brannan's curator insight, December 9, 2014 10:21 PM

This animated film shows you what agriculture is really like. Sometimes it is difficult to be a farmer because of all of the climate changes. When the weather changes off and on, it can kill the crops, making it harder for farmers to find food. So as you can see, farmers go through a lot and it take a lot of hard work to be a successful farmer.

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The true cost of oil

TED Talks What does environmental devastation actually look like? At TEDxVictoria, photographer Garth Lenz shares shocking photos of the Alberta Tar Sands mining project -- and the beautiful (and vital) ecosystems under threat.

 

This is a visually stunning portrayal of Canadian landscapes.   He shows incredibly gorgeous photographs of the ecosystems of the boreal forest, indigenous cultural landscapes and natural scenery.  This is unfortunately the backdrop for the impacts of industrial extraction of oil from the tar sands of the Athabasca in Canada.  Collectively, this makes for a jarring justaposition of environmental landscapes.


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Elizabeth Bitgood's curator insight, January 29, 2014 10:59 AM

This presentation is very moving on the emotional side of the plight of Canada’s natural resources.  When it comes to oil production no matter where it is it will be dirty, messy and fraught with problems that impact the environment.  The idea that everyone wants oil but they don’t want to mess up their own country to get it is an interesting problem.  Frankly the more developed countries like Canada are more likely to mine the resources responsibly then a country that has little or no environmental protections.  This speaker gives a very impassioned presentation but he offers no alternatives to oil.  Getting oil from a country that has environmental protection laws is cleaner and better then getting it from a country that cares nothing for the environment; it is less accountable and more environmentally damaging to get it from somewhere else.  Pipelines are cleaner ways of moving oil as they seldom leak and don’t crash and spill.  The debate over oil and environmental responsibility will continue until a viable source of clean energy is created. 

Louis Mazza's curator insight, January 28, 12:37 PM

this video shows the beauties to be found in world, and the negative effects that mining for oil can do to these areas. in one region it was home to a type of deer but all they could be found was the deers antlers. that showed that mining for oil was killing all the deer. all these regions are under threat. the largest toxic wastelands on the planet are being created.

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Sustainable Urbanism

http://www.ted.com Jaime Lerner reinvented urban space in his native Curitiba, Brazil. Along the way, he changed the way city planners worldwide see whats po...

 

Jaime Lerner does not see cities as the problem; he sees urbanism as the solution to many global problems.  This video outlines practical plans to rethink the city to be more sustainable.  To see an trailer for a documentary about the urban changes in Curitiba, Brazil, see: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=swQTTG3NcYY


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Seth Dixon's curator insight, February 15, 2014 8:02 AM

Jaime Lerner does not see cities as the problem; he sees urbanism as the solution to many global problems.  This video outlines practical plans to rethink the city to be more sustainable.  Click here to see the trailer for a documentary about the urban changes in Curitiba, Brazil. 

Elizabeth Bitgood's curator insight, February 17, 2014 11:47 AM

This video is enlightening.  The speaker uses the city as a model for fixing problems in the world.  Instead of seeing the city as an enemy to environmentalism, he purposes changing the cities and reworking old sites like quarries into something that is useable today.  He also advocates the integration of the transportation systems to make commuting more feasible as well as less pollution generating. 

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The Geography of Hunger and Food Insecurity

Why are some communities more vulnerable to hunger and famine? There are many reasons, which together add up to food insecurity, the world's no.1 health risk...

 

Excellent summary of the geographic factors that lead to food insecurity and hunger and the main ways NGO's are trying to combat the issues.   This is an incredibly complex problem that, at it's heart, is a geographic issue that can challenge student to synthesize information and make the connections between topics.  


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Lisa Fonseca's comment, December 5, 2011 1:02 AM
This is a incredible clip that does challenge students to synthesize information and make the connections between topics, but it can also help students to realize making a difference at a early age is important. I learned an abundance of facts just from watching, it was informative and intriguing. As I was watching the video I was thinking of ways it can be incorporated into the classroom. This video could get students to learn about the world's number one health risk. Incorporating it into the classroom by holding a food drive, or having a school wide fundraiser to donate to the British Red Cross is also another way to help. Getting our future minds informed and helping the community will make an impact in the future.
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Selling condoms in the Congo

TED Talks HIV is a serious problem in the DR Congo, and aid agencies have flooded the country with free and cheap condoms. But few people are using them. Why?

 

This video highlights why some well-intending NGOs with excellent plans for the developing world don't have the impact they are hoping for. Cultural barriers to diffusion abound and finding a way to make your idea resonate with your target audience takes some preparation. This also addresses some important demographic and health-related issues, so the clip could be used in a variety of places within the curriculum. FYI: this clip briefly shows some steamy condom ads.


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Crissy Borton's curator insight, December 11, 2012 9:45 PM

Marketing is not something I would have thought about when trying to get people in the Kongo to use condoms. Her research into the brands they use and why may save many lives.

Nick Flanagan's curator insight, December 12, 2012 8:27 PM

I was surprised actually that it took this long for someone to think of this, given the fact that the AIDS crisis in Africa is practically a pandemic.However it is a good idea that someone had finally started to do something about it.  

Kaitlin Young's curator insight, November 13, 2014 5:37 PM

This video explains the errors that a lot of NGOs make when attempting to help the developing world. While the NGOs have done a service providing condoms in the DRC, they lack appropriate marketing and merchandising for the product itself. In a way, the organizations need to eliminate their egos in the situation and allow for the product to be marketed appropriately.

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Dan Barber: How I fell in love with a fish

Chef Dan Barber squares off with a dilemma facing many chefs today: how to keep fish on the menu.

 

This is a compelling analysis of the agricultural food system through the case-study of fish farms.  If we fish the seas like we clear-cut forests, the biodiversity of the world's waters will be seriously depleted.  That has been the economic model for fishing for hundreds of years and it is obviously not sustainable given the growing population and demand for fish.   However, not all "sustainable" fish farming businesses are equal, and this TED talk demonstrates some of the best practices to restructure the food industry for the best food and environmental results.


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EnviroJMS's curator insight, September 18, 2013 7:29 AM

This is an interesting video on sustainable fish farming, it might be helpful to someone who wants to write about sustainable farming. Apologies, it is quite long

 

Aleksandre da Silva

 

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Globalizing the Local, Localizing the Global

Sheikha Al Mayassa, a patron of artists, storytellers and filmmakers in Qatar, talks about how art and culture create a country's identity -- and allow every country to share its unique identity with the wider world.

 

Oftentimes, we in the more developed world seek to change cultural practices and institutions in the developing world. This talk speaks to the importance of locally based agents for cultural change, specifically within the context of the Middle East. While we might wish to see what many perceive as universal rights spread throughout the world, the local cultural geographies must be taken into consideration into how to carry out any initiative that seeks to change local institutions.


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Katharine Norman's curator insight, September 15, 2013 1:19 AM

Sheikha provides an amazing talk that leaves no one denying that culture is the underlying thread that ties us all together.

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West Africa: Slavery in the Chocolate Industry

Although slavery is no longer legal there are still millions of people living in slavery today. One place and industry where slaves still exist is the cocoa ...

 

The world's leading producer of cocoa is Côte d'Ivoire and dirty secret is that slavery is commonplace on cocoa plantations in West Africa.    Children are smuggled from countries such as Mali, Niger and Burkina Faso and then are placed on remote, isolated plantations.  While statistics are all guesstimates, this video is purporting that 35% of the world's chocolate is produced by slave labor (I've seen higher estimates).  What factors lead to this horrific condition?  How is this a geographic issue?    


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Samuel D'Amore's curator insight, December 17, 2014 12:38 AM

Its both sad and horrific to think that chocolate, such a pleasure and luxury item in the west comes as such a high cost. It's so sad that so many people are oppressed and used in situations such as this just so those living in places of plenty can enjoy resources like chocolate. Unfortunately it seems for the few to benefit many more have to suffer and endure hardships.  

John Nieuwendyk's curator insight, December 17, 2014 5:03 PM

I was not aware that slavery is still not unusual in cocoa plantation in West Africa. It sickens me because nations all around the world consume chocolate produced under slave labor. 

AnthonyAcosta/NoahMata's curator insight, April 8, 1:36 PM

 (Social)

 

Chocolate is a very known thing in first world countries and is not known for what is needed to make it. So in Africa they smuggle children from various places in Africa and force them to labor for cocoa beans and work on plantations. Many young children near there   Teen ages are taken and put through labor for most of there young lives.

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The Economics of Sustainability

http://www.ted.com Have we used up all our resources? Have we filled up all the livable space on Earth? Paul Gilding suggests we have, and the possibility of...

 

This provocatively title TED talk would be an excellent resource for discussing sustainable development.  What are the economic, environmental, political and cultural ramifications of suggested policies that seek to lead towards sustainable development?  What are the ramifications of not changing policies towards sustainable development?  


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Kenny Dominguez's curator insight, December 12, 2013 1:02 AM

 I found this video very interesting because it spoke about how there is so little space and more and more people are having kids. But there is no space because everyone likes having a lot of room to expand that is why because everyone in the world could fit in the state of California. So there is space it is just not spread out good enough that everyone could fit comfortably. 

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Making Cities Sing

Making Cities Sing | Development geography | Scoop.it
In urban centers around the country, local governments are looking to attract emerging industries and the next generation of entrepreneurs.

 

This video shows a panel of urbanists presenting at the Aspen Ideas Festival.  The panelists specialize in revitalizing cities and creating economically and culturally vibrant urban centers.  They focus not on public policy, but rather finding ways to implement the locally produced ideas of people from the neighborhood with an intimate knowledge of the community as well as a vested in strengthening the local networks.  They also highlight the arts, sense of place and the culture of a neighborhood as key components create attractive cities.

 

More videos from the Apsen Ideas Festival on urbanism, see: http://www.aspenideas.org/session/advice-megacity


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Ricardo Cabeza de Vaca's curator insight, May 27, 4:09 AM

I think this video is really interesting on how local government is looking to help cities create a great economically diverse environment and develop them. These panelists have new ideas and would like to implement them on cities and communities.. They would like to use the arts to help neighborhoods and change them for the better. I think this is a great idea and I think art can unite and improve neighborhoods. They would also like to use laws and local policies to improve neighborhoods.